Was Jonathan Edwards a 5-Point Calvinist?

People often ask me about particular views of Jonathan Edwards. What would he have believed about this or that topic? For some questions, it would be impossible to answer. I simply don’t know what he would have believed on any given modern controversy. He didn’t say.

But when it comes to the 5-Points of Calvinism, there can be no doubt. He told us.

The acronym T.U.L.I.P. stands for Total depravity, Unconditional election, Limited atonement, Irresistible grace, and the Perseverance of the saints. John Calvin, of course, did not come up with the acronym illustrated by the glorious Dutch flower. Someone else made up that handy-dandy mnemonic device.

But Edwards did attempt to show his convictions with relationship to each of the 5-Points. He does so in his magnum opus, the Freedom of the Will. Personally, I have always thought Freedom is hard to understand. (I have a brief summary and explainer of the work here). It’s not exactly my favorite work of Edwards. I much prefer Religious Affections and Some Thoughts on the Revival.

Nevertheless, there can be no doubt by what Edwards says in his own words in the conclusion of this monumental work that he does support the 5-Points of the Synod of Dordt as over against the remonstrance of the Arminians. In this in-depth video, I am going to take you through Edwards’s defense of the traditional TULIP doctrines.

Check it out here: